New Jersey's 26th Legislative District

Senator Joe Pennacchio

Senator Joe Pennacchio

Pennacchio Disappointed by Murphy’s Veto of $500K for Clean Drinking Water, Approval of $1M for Stadium Project in Paterson

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Senator Joe Pennacchio chastised Governor Phil Murphy’s misplaced priorities after he signed legislation providing $1 million to renovate a decrepit stadium in Paterson just days after vetoing $500,000 to help maintain Greenwood Lake in Passaic County.

Sen. Joe Pennacchio expressed disappointment at Gov. Murphy’s misplaced priorities after he approved $1M to renovate an unused stadium in Paterson just days after vetoing $500K to maintain Greenwood Lake. (GoogleMaps)

“Less than a week after Gov. Murphy blocked a bipartisan effort to support Greenwood Lake and ensure clean drinking water for more than 3 million people, he approved twice as much money for someone’s pet project in Paterson,” said Pennacchio (R-26). “The veto was especially disappointing because the governor had personally claimed responsibility for the state-owned lake. To instead fund the renovation of an unused stadium is a staggering demonstration of the governor’s politically driven and misplaced priorities.”

Last summer, Greenwood Lake tested with high levels of blue-green algae. The heavy algae bloom turned the water green, triggered a no-swimming advisory, and crushed the economy in the lake region.

Pennacchio’s bill (S-2167/A3804) passed both houses with unanimous support. It would have provided $500,000 from boat registration renewal fees to preserve the lake with weed removal, dredging, and algae control.

The legislation the governor signed today (S-4025) spends twice that amount to help resurrect a crumbling, long-abandoned stadium in the Democrat-controlled city. Hinchliffe Stadium was built in 1932 and closed to the public since 1996. The contentious project could cost more than $76 million and likely would require additional taxpayer funds.

“Governor Murphy has a responsibility to all New Jersey citizens,” added Pennacchio. “The people of West Milford and Passaic County, where Greenwood Lake is located, and the millions who rely on the lake for clean drinking water, deserve no less than the residents of Democrat strongholds.”

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